Author Topic: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?  (Read 8239 times)

jeromedawg

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Hi all,

My wife is planning to give notice come Monday and we're working on her resignation. The thing is, most of if not all her work (accounting) can be done from home and really on her own time at this point in time. She has asked previously about working from home since having our kid but her manager/director seemed pretty adamant that company policy disallows telecommuting. Anyway, we figure it's worth it one last time as a hail mary just to lay out her responsibilities and offering to work part-time and from home but are unsure about how to present this as an option.

Essentially, it would be asking for a flexible work arrangement upon giving notice and if they don't bite then she leaves regardless. If they do offer it though, then all the better.

Should she include these details in the resignation letter itself, generally listing out her responsibilities and then suggesting that she can do the work remotely and part-time? Or should it be in a separate letter? Or just verbally?

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2016, 05:54:51 AM »
My wife pulled this off after our daughter was born, but that was for a small company that has a track record of hiring nincompoops - so they were very sad to see her go.

What she did is go in ready to quit but without a formal letter, expressing openness to help them transition. She's been doing part-time work from home while taking care of our daughter during the day for two years now.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2016, 07:56:57 AM »
My wife pulled this off after our daughter was born, but that was for a small company that has a track record of hiring nincompoops - so they were very sad to see her go.

What she did is go in ready to quit but without a formal letter, expressing openness to help them transition. She's been doing part-time work from home while taking care of our daughter during the day for two years now.

Hmm, now I'm wondering if a formal letter would kill all chances of a deal. Perhaps not. Maybe she should have a formal letter to hand over and then just verbally express openness for the transition. Not sure if it would make much sense to put all the details of her position/duties and fact that she can do it all from home in the resignation letter itself. But I'm wondering if it should be documented somehow some other way

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2016, 07:58:59 AM »
I had the same plan when I was leaving a company and I included all of those details in my resignation letter. My manager immediately took me up on that offer and 2 years later I'm still an Independent Contractor that telecommutes 100%. Doesn't hurt to add it.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2016, 08:07:32 AM »
I had the same plan when I was leaving a company and I included all of those details in my resignation letter. My manager immediately took me up on that offer and 2 years later I'm still an Independent Contractor that telecommutes 100%. Doesn't hurt to add it.

Thanks! So perhaps I will just have her add the details of the job (basically a job description of what she does and can do remotely to help) and see where it goes. We don't have high hopes of this working out anyway, since she's inquired several times prior and every time the director has said "no" - I think they'd be foolish to let this one slip because they seem to really like her and rely on her for a lot of stuff. She thinks she's pretty replaceable but my wife often undervalues herself more than she knows. Either way, it's their loss and problem if they decide to just let her slip away.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2016, 08:20:45 AM »
Is your wife planning on discussing this in person first and then submitting a letter? I've found that if you resign and they ask the reason, you can tell them you are looking to spend more time caring for family. If they want to keep you, many times they'll offer part time hours or a work from home arrangement during the in-person discussion of the resignation. If they don't offer first, she can always say "but i really enjoy working with the team, and if you ever need someone to pickup some work from home I'd love to help." This isn't pushy, leaves the door open, and really demonstrates an employee's dedication to their job even in the midst of a resignation. If they seem open to this, even if a work arrangement isn't officially agreed upon, she can then work it into the resignation letter by reiterating her offer.

As a previous manager, I would not recommend just turning in a letter before having an in person resignation with her supervisor. And I wouldn't plan on turning the letter over right away at the meeting because you may want to adjust it based on how that conversation goes. The letter can be sent afterwards. Just sending in a letter without telling them first would be shocking and probably won't go over well.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2016, 08:23:31 AM by little_brown_dog »

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2016, 08:28:32 AM »
Is your wife planning on discussing this in person first and then submitting a letter? I've found that if you resign and they ask the reason, you can tell them you are looking to spend more time caring for family. If they want to keep you, many times they'll offer part time hours or a work from home arrangement during the in-person discussion of the resignation. If they don't offer first, she can always say "but i really enjoy working with the team, and if you ever need someone to pickup some work from home I'd love to help." This isn't pushy, leaves the door open, and really demonstrates an employee's dedication to their job even in the midst of a resignation. If they seem open to this, even if a work arrangement isn't officially agreed upon, she can then work it into the resignation letter by reiterating her offer.

As a previous manager, I would not recommend just turning in a letter before having an in person resignation with her supervisor. And I wouldn't plan on turning the letter over right away at the meeting because you may want to adjust it based on how that conversation goes. The letter can be sent afterwards. Just sending in a letter without telling them first would be shocking and probably won't go over well.

Great ideas! I'll pass these along to her. She's preparing a letter but will give the verbal resignation prior to handing it in. I always thought these two go hand-in-hand but it makes sense that it doesn't have to (or necessarily should). I'll advise her to have the discussion first and reiterate her interest in still helping out but on a more flex and or part-time schedule.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2016, 08:30:21 AM by jplee3 »

Axecleaver

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2016, 12:19:08 PM »
My recommendation is close to the others, but a slightly different sequence. Prepare a resignation letter. Keep it simple, indicate a willingness to continue to work remotely but keep it short. Ask for a one on one meeting. Go into this meeting with the letter (in a briefcase, or a pad of paper or whatever).

Tell the director that you're planning to resign to spend more time at home with the baby. If he is willing to negotiate terms, don't give them the letter. If he isn't willing to negotiate, hand in the letter and say that if he changes his mind, you would be willing to discuss.

This creates the illusion that the director remains in charge of the situation. If you hand him a letter first, he will feel strong-armed and given his resistance to this in the past, he may argue his position rather than his interest.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2016, 12:41:44 PM »
My recommendation is close to the others, but a slightly different sequence. Prepare a resignation letter. Keep it simple, indicate a willingness to continue to work remotely but keep it short. Ask for a one on one meeting. Go into this meeting with the letter (in a briefcase, or a pad of paper or whatever).

Tell the director that you're planning to resign to spend more time at home with the baby. If he is willing to negotiate terms, don't give them the letter. If he isn't willing to negotiate, hand in the letter and say that if he changes his mind, you would be willing to discuss.

This creates the illusion that the director remains in charge of the situation. If you hand him a letter first, he will feel strong-armed and given his resistance to this in the past, he may argue his position rather than his interest.

Thanks! This is almost exactly what I have instructed my wife to do - basically only give them the letter as a last-ditch effort outlining the terms of a flexible/remote working arrangement that would benefit both parties. I didn't consider the last part about handing the letter in regardless of whether or not her manager is open to it and told her only to include the information about offering to work remotely if her manager was at all open to it. Sounds like she should just include it all anyway and leave on the note of "if you change your mind" even if the manager adamantly says "no" - that way the ball is still left in their court, as you suggested, and my wife will have left on the highest note possible.

formerlydivorcedmom

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2016, 08:02:39 AM »
One of the key points someone made earlier was "independent contractor".

I once worked for a company that frowned on work-from-home for employees.  They had no problem with us becoming contractors and working solely from home.  That change in status meant they didn't have to pay for benefits anymore.

I turned in my notice because we were moving due to my husband's job.  I mentioned the idea of finishing my projects remotely, and before I knew it, I was a contractor, working part-time from home, at a higher hourly salary than I had previously earned.

I hope she has good luck.

dkaid

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2016, 12:21:18 PM »
Will be curious to see how it turns out, will you come back and let us know?

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2016, 03:51:10 PM »
Will be curious to see how it turns out, will you come back and let us know?

Will do.

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2016, 07:30:33 PM »
I did this and it worked.  I have a dream arrangement where I work 3 consecutive days and then have a 4 day weekend.   I phrased it as: I was planning to simply resign because I'm looking to spend more time with my family, but I really love working here and I don't actually want to leave."  Then I presented a detailed, written part time plan.  It took some weeks of behind the scenes negotiating between my boss and higher ups, but I got what I wanted.

I wouldn't "leave the door open" for a flex arrangement.  Just say what you want, your ideal scenario (then add a little so there's some bargaining room).  Finally, now's the time for her to take on a few important tasks to make herself extra indispensable when she has that convo.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2016, 09:56:42 PM »
OP's wife here! Thanks for everyone's responses.

We have another question (getting ahead of ourselves but wanting to think ahead). In the case that the company does allow me to become a part-time independent contractor, how do I come up with an appropriate hourly rate to charge them when I lose out on all of the benefits, e.g. 401K match, 15 paid holidays, 15 vacation days, and 10 sick days. Let's say my current hourly rate at the company is $25. I'm not sure how to weigh it all out because I don't want to charge too high but want a reasonable rate.

As a side note: I was anticipating a promotion likely sometime within the year - nobody has said anything about this but I think it's a fair assessment based on how things in my group are looking. 

pbkmaine

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2016, 10:08:15 PM »
2x your current hourly rate.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2016, 10:12:33 PM »
2x your current hourly rate.

Thanks, and that's just a general guideline to start from or hard number target to shoot for? e.g. should I ask for $60-65 and work down to $50 from there? Or ask for $50 and expect less?

pbkmaine

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2016, 10:13:30 PM »
You could start a bit higher and agree to a bit lower.

ender

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #17 on: January 15, 2016, 11:49:54 PM »
OP's wife here! Thanks for everyone's responses.

We have another question (getting ahead of ourselves but wanting to think ahead). In the case that the company does allow me to become a part-time independent contractor, how do I come up with an appropriate hourly rate to charge them when I lose out on all of the benefits, e.g. 401K match, 15 paid holidays, 15 vacation days, and 10 sick days. Let's say my current hourly rate at the company is $25. I'm not sure how to weigh it all out because I don't want to charge too high but want a reasonable rate.

As a side note: I was anticipating a promotion likely sometime within the year - nobody has said anything about this but I think it's a fair assessment based on how things in my group are looking.

Let's say your 401k match is 5%.

You are paid for (52  - 3 - 3 - 2) =  44 weeks a year, or 1760 hours/year of actual working time.

If your salary is equivalent to 52*40*$25/hr = $52,000/year then you are being compensated for $52k*1.05 = $54.6k/year in total compensation (you might add other benefits in too).  But you also lose the company payment for FICA, so another 7.5% - so now it's $52k * (1 + 0.05 + 0.075) = $58.5k/year. You probably have other benefits too and may have additional expenses (health insurance is a big one, training costs, equipment, many things).

Regardless of what you include, you need to figure out your total compensation so you can find your compensation per worked hour - which is what you will do as an independent contractor.

Assuming you work the full 1760 hours a year and all the above are true, this means you need to get at least $58.5k/1760 hours to even break even on your current income.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2016, 06:05:20 AM »
If everybody goes on the husband's health insurance they might be willing to keep you as an employee so you can just shove a big portion of your earnings in your 401k. That is what my wife does.

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #19 on: January 16, 2016, 09:21:49 AM »
OP's wife here! Thanks for everyone's responses.

We have another question (getting ahead of ourselves but wanting to think ahead). In the case that the company does allow me to become a part-time independent contractor, how do I come up with an appropriate hourly rate to charge them when I lose out on all of the benefits, e.g. 401K match, 15 paid holidays, 15 vacation days, and 10 sick days. Let's say my current hourly rate at the company is $25. I'm not sure how to weigh it all out because I don't want to charge too high but want a reasonable rate.

As a side note: I was anticipating a promotion likely sometime within the year - nobody has said anything about this but I think it's a fair assessment based on how things in my group are looking.

I would aim for 1.5x your current hourly rate as a full-time contractor. If they are only offering part-time time hours and you're unable to pick up additional work from other sources, closer to 2x your current rate would be fair. A few questions to keep in mind: How must do you need/desire to maintain your income? What are your chances of negotiating a similar arrangement with another employer? How valuable is it for you long-term to have continuity in your work experience?

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #20 on: January 16, 2016, 10:57:00 AM »
If everybody goes on the husband's health insurance they might be willing to keep you as an employee so you can just shove a big portion of your earnings in your 401k. That is what my wife does.

We actually are doing this now (or at least with my former employer) as my rates were better than my wife's. We plan to do that with my current employer as well as soon as the benefits kick in (Feb 1st). If she goes to independent contractor status though, doesn't she lose the 401k?

On that note, and given that we're using my healthcare benefits, should she try to get part-time employment with the company as a first choice and if they don't bite, then try to settle as an independent contractor as a second choice? Or would independent contractor always be the preference?

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #21 on: January 16, 2016, 11:01:44 AM »
OP's wife here! Thanks for everyone's responses.

We have another question (getting ahead of ourselves but wanting to think ahead). In the case that the company does allow me to become a part-time independent contractor, how do I come up with an appropriate hourly rate to charge them when I lose out on all of the benefits, e.g. 401K match, 15 paid holidays, 15 vacation days, and 10 sick days. Let's say my current hourly rate at the company is $25. I'm not sure how to weigh it all out because I don't want to charge too high but want a reasonable rate.

As a side note: I was anticipating a promotion likely sometime within the year - nobody has said anything about this but I think it's a fair assessment based on how things in my group are looking.

I would aim for 1.5x your current hourly rate as a full-time contractor. If they are only offering part-time time hours and you're unable to pick up additional work from other sources, closer to 2x your current rate would be fair. A few questions to keep in mind: How must do you need/desire to maintain your income? What are your chances of negotiating a similar arrangement with another employer? How valuable is it for you long-term to have continuity in your work experience?

We'll probably have her aim for 2x in general. If we wanted to maintain the same income we've been at, she would need $30-40k which I think would be a very pressed number as part-time or contractor given her current experience. It could be possible though with a different employer, as you suggest. She's a staff accountant but has quite a few more-administrative tasks. She has sort of been wanting to get more into the 'meat and potatoes' of things and I think only a promotion at her current place would really allow her to get into that. At the end of the day, I think she likely wants to maintain and get better as an accountant but has no desire to "move up the corporate ladder"

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #22 on: January 16, 2016, 11:18:11 AM »
Something to consider – decide what you think your answer will be if they allow part time work at your current rate, but are not willing to provide extra. This is highly possible as many employers view the decision to "let" an employee reduce their hours as a generous act. That is what happened to me when I dropped down to part time- they were willing to keep me and give me fewer hours without demoting me/changing my title, but I had to keep my hourly rate even though my healthcare costs went up (my employer provided health benefits to pt workers, but at quadruple the cost). I was fine with this because I wanted fewer hours/more free time more than anything else, but many people would not be okay with that arrangement.

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #23 on: January 16, 2016, 05:31:33 PM »
Whatever you do you need to politely ask for what you want.  I wouldn't expect your employer to guess at what you want.  Leaving the door open may not result in anything. 

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #24 on: January 18, 2016, 01:22:43 PM »
Okay, so she gave notice and they were completely closed to the idea of part-time and considered contracting as "part-time" regardless. So they shut the door completely it seems. She's still going to submit the resignation letter I think with her "extended offer" but the kicker now is that they want her to extend her 2weeks notice out another week (into Feb). Should she do it? Or should she say no and keep her end date as end of month? She doesn't want to burn bridges and her manager wants the letter *now* - not sure if I'll get any feedback before she can turn it in. Either way, she's inclined to say "nope, 1/29 is my hard end date. sorry" especially in light of the fact that the company is unwilling to be flexible. 

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #25 on: January 18, 2016, 01:27:46 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run. Saying "no you didn't give me what I wanted so you don't get what you want" may feel good right away, but it doesn't help her prospects at all in the future if they change their minds about the pt work.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2016, 01:30:47 PM by little_brown_dog »

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #26 on: January 18, 2016, 01:29:36 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run.

This might be considered "hardship" in the case that she needs to be home watching the kid - we have no arrangements for alternatives at this point in time.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #27 on: January 18, 2016, 01:34:09 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run.

This might be considered "hardship" in the case that she needs to be home watching the kid - we have no arrangements for alternatives at this point in time.

hmmm if that's the case, maybe she can go with something like "I'm so sorry I'd love to help but I really can't be in the office after X date. I can be available by phone/email that week though if anyone has any questions". Still helpful and thoughtful, but you won't need to arrange childcare.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #28 on: January 18, 2016, 01:56:11 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run.

This might be considered "hardship" in the case that she needs to be home watching the kid - we have no arrangements for alternatives at this point in time.

hmmm if that's the case, maybe she can go with something like "I'm so sorry I'd love to help but I really can't be in the office after X date. I can be available by phone/email that week though if anyone has any questions". Still helpful and thoughtful, but you won't need to arrange childcare.

Great idea. I told her to ask if her manager could give her several days to "try to find arrangements for childcare" which I think is reasonable. But to throw the offer out I also told her to say "if I cannot find arrangements for that week at all, I would still love to help and can be available by phone and email to help with the transition - would that be suitable?"

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #29 on: January 18, 2016, 02:28:27 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run.

This might be considered "hardship" in the case that she needs to be home watching the kid - we have no arrangements for alternatives at this point in time.

hmmm if that's the case, maybe she can go with something like "I'm so sorry I'd love to help but I really can't be in the office after X date. I can be available by phone/email that week though if anyone has any questions". Still helpful and thoughtful, but you won't need to arrange childcare.

Great idea. I told her to ask if her manager could give her several days to "try to find arrangements for childcare" which I think is reasonable. But to throw the offer out I also told her to say "if I cannot find arrangements for that week at all, I would still love to help and can be available by phone and email to help with the transition - would that be suitable?"

Sounds perfectly reasonable and accommodating. Hopefully her manager responds positively. If they lash out (not uncommon when employees leave, even when they are being totally professional about it) she did everything she could, and shouldn't feel bad sticking with the 2 weeks while reiterating her availability if they need to call her the following week. At the end of the day, she resigned gracefully and thoughtfully. That's all she can do. Good luck!

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #30 on: January 18, 2016, 02:31:33 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run.

This might be considered "hardship" in the case that she needs to be home watching the kid - we have no arrangements for alternatives at this point in time.

hmmm if that's the case, maybe she can go with something like "I'm so sorry I'd love to help but I really can't be in the office after X date. I can be available by phone/email that week though if anyone has any questions". Still helpful and thoughtful, but you won't need to arrange childcare.

Great idea. I told her to ask if her manager could give her several days to "try to find arrangements for childcare" which I think is reasonable. But to throw the offer out I also told her to say "if I cannot find arrangements for that week at all, I would still love to help and can be available by phone and email to help with the transition - would that be suitable?"

Sounds perfectly reasonable and accommodating. Hopefully her manager responds positively. If they lash out (not uncommon when employees leave, even when they are being totally professional about it) she did everything she could, and shouldn't feel bad sticking with the 2 weeks while reiterating her availability if they need to call her the following week. At the end of the day, she resigned gracefully and thoughtfully. That's all she can do. Good luck!

Thanks! She was also thinking about removing all references to her 'extended offer' of going part-time or as a contractor in the resignation letter. I told her to just keep all that in there because you never know if they might change their minds (although, given the track-record this company has, I sincerely doubt it... she's better off just finding a telecommute job elsewhere)

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #31 on: January 18, 2016, 05:32:17 PM »
Unless its a hardship she should extend to 3 weeks. This will do wonders for her image with the managers, regardless of how unreasonable they are. She isn't giving in, she's playing smart. She might need their reference in the future, and they WILL remember if she refused. Don't go down on principle...do what is best for her in the long run.

This might be considered "hardship" in the case that she needs to be home watching the kid - we have no arrangements for alternatives at this point in time.

hmmm if that's the case, maybe she can go with something like "I'm so sorry I'd love to help but I really can't be in the office after X date. I can be available by phone/email that week though if anyone has any questions". Still helpful and thoughtful, but you won't need to arrange childcare.

She said she spoke with the manager and he said "it won't be necessary" (to help via phone/email) and kept on reiterating that it would just be additional "courtesy" if she came in during that week... I have to say that my wife and I both work[ed] for employers (my previous employer) that are really unreasonable and petty. I'm just stressed out from hearing the responses she's gotten back from her management as well as dealing with a stupid tuition assistance reimbursement issue that my previous employer is going after me on (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/former-employer-billing-me-per-tuition-assistance/). I just want to *facepunch* the both of them!

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #32 on: January 18, 2016, 06:07:08 PM »
She said she spoke with the manager and he said "it won't be necessary" (to help via phone/email) and kept on reiterating that it would just be additional "courtesy" if she came in during that week... I have to say that my wife and I both work[ed] for employers (my previous employer) that are really unreasonable and petty. I'm just stressed out from hearing the responses she's gotten back from her management as well as dealing with a stupid tuition assistance reimbursement issue that my previous employer is going after me on (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/former-employer-billing-me-per-tuition-assistance/). I just want to *facepunch* the both of them!

At this point it's most likely about trying to exact a modicum of control given that any good manager would happily accept an employee's offer to be available for questions free of charge instead of pressuring them for more time. All she can do is apologize again and politely reiterate her last day, type up a gracious resignation letter with that date, and maintain her professionalism in the face of future antics. Hopefully her managers are the passive aggressive type and will ignore/avoid her in her final weeks instead of becoming outwardly hostile.  I used to deal with some pretty interesting characters when I worked full time, so she isn't alone in this experience! The good news: she's free in 2 weeks time. 

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #33 on: January 18, 2016, 06:31:52 PM »
She said she spoke with the manager and he said "it won't be necessary" (to help via phone/email) and kept on reiterating that it would just be additional "courtesy" if she came in during that week... I have to say that my wife and I both work[ed] for employers (my previous employer) that are really unreasonable and petty. I'm just stressed out from hearing the responses she's gotten back from her management as well as dealing with a stupid tuition assistance reimbursement issue that my previous employer is going after me on (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/former-employer-billing-me-per-tuition-assistance/). I just want to *facepunch* the both of them!

At this point it's most likely about trying to exact a modicum of control given that any good manager would happily accept an employee's offer to be available for questions free of charge instead of pressuring them for more time. All she can do is apologize again and politely reiterate her last day, type up a gracious resignation letter with that date, and maintain her professionalism in the face of future antics. Hopefully her managers are the passive aggressive type and will ignore/avoid her in her final weeks instead of becoming outwardly hostile.  I used to deal with some pretty interesting characters when I worked full time, so she isn't alone in this experience! The good news: she's free in 2 weeks time.

So my wife left out an important piece of information that she just gave me 5 minutes ago. Apparently, her manager put a "hypothetical" out there saying something along the lines of "if we did give you a remote laptop to work full time at home, you would absolutely have to work full-time undistracted blah blah blah. I know how hard it can be with kids at home so yea... but that's what would have to happen"

I told her to run with that and give her manager her exact terms "I know you said you need me to go full time but I discussed that's not possible. However, I still feel I can benefit the company and essentially do most of my work in less hours (especially now that she has had stuff taken off her plate)." I went on to tell her to really press the point that this would be a win-win situation for both parties if she becomes a contractor partnering with them - the company would save on not having to pay benefits and would ultimately end up paying her less than they are now (and it would still probably be cheaper than hiring a full-time replacement - not sure if she should actually say something like that but if the company doesn't realize this, they're pretty stupid). And she would have the flexibility to work when she wants (or I suppose needs) and still have an income.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2016, 06:35:31 PM by jplee3 »

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #34 on: January 18, 2016, 07:50:20 PM »
So I encouraged my wife to pitch the idea (with definite terms, cost-savings of keeping her vs bringing in someone new, no need for the company to pay benefits, and paying her less than they are now etc). Her manager seems reasonable and said he'd try to figure out how to present it to the director but he reiterated to her that it really comes down to "culture, structure, and being fair to the team or else everyone else would get to work from home" more than it does the money. Apparently there are no "work from home" employees at the company or it's very rare. And it almost seems like they don't use contractors, which I'd be hard-pressed to believe. I think they are being extremely short-sighted and shallow-minded to not see the win here (call her a contractor so it's outside of the "structure" they worry about and save a lot of money having her do the same stuff she was left doing already but with less hours... I just don't get it). This would especially be mind-numbing if there are contractors present in other divisions.

Axecleaver

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #35 on: January 19, 2016, 09:49:17 AM »
OK, so now we've discovered the real issue is that the manager is not comfortable with giving up control of employees by letting them work from home. He probably does not have experience with this and imagines that employees would be spending all of their time watching Star Trek instead of working. She will have a tough, uphill battle to demonstrate that she can be effective in this environment.

Do not suggest less money, because this is not about money. It's about fear and loss of control.

Recommend you agree to full time WFH. It's good that he is considering an option at all. She may also want to negotiate a day a week at the office, or available to attend certain meetings in person, to throw him a bone, even though it's inconvenient.

And, by the way, the boss is totally right that it's tough to work from home with toddlers to take care of. It can be done with structure, but it's tough.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #36 on: January 19, 2016, 10:01:41 AM »
OK, so now we've discovered the real issue is that the manager is not comfortable with giving up control of employees by letting them work from home. He probably does not have experience with this and imagines that employees would be spending all of their time watching Star Trek instead of working. She will have a tough, uphill battle to demonstrate that she can be effective in this environment.

Do not suggest less money, because this is not about money. It's about fear and loss of control.

Recommend you agree to full time WFH. It's good that he is considering an option at all. She may also want to negotiate a day a week at the office, or available to attend certain meetings in person, to throw him a bone, even though it's inconvenient.

And, by the way, the boss is totally right that it's tough to work from home with toddlers to take care of. It can be done with structure, but it's tough.

Yeah, it seems like it's not about money at this point in time. Keywords "culture", "structure" and then throwing in the tidbit of "unfair to other employees" (which really just translates to - I don't want to deal with people complaining to me) puts the manager and his director on the line for "company values" - from what my wife tells me, it's extremely rare that anyone would telecommute there. I don't know if she knows all the details though. I think the issue is with the director and her not being able to fully trust her employees and relinquish her grip of control over the group.

Regarding the full time WFH, the manager is threw it out as a hypothetical but upon further discussing it with the director, she seemed to indicate that she "needs someone in the office and full time" but that they could give a laptop for remote access (I suppose for consolation? lol). At this point in time, even if they did offer her that, I'm not sure she'd be in a position to take it given the expectations they already have. I have serious doubts that they'd even offer it though - she told me that they've already opened up a req to fill the position which to me sounds like they don't care much to keep her around. So why should she care so much to stick with them - might as well find a telecommute job with an employer actually open to it than waste any more of her time. The company (or rather director) has shown their real face when it comes down to it.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #37 on: January 19, 2016, 10:29:20 AM »
OK, so now we've discovered the real issue is that the manager is not comfortable with giving up control of employees by letting them work from home. He probably does not have experience with this and imagines that employees would be spending all of their time watching Star Trek instead of working. She will have a tough, uphill battle to demonstrate that she can be effective in this environment.

Do not suggest less money, because this is not about money. It's about fear and loss of control.

Recommend you agree to full time WFH. It's good that he is considering an option at all. She may also want to negotiate a day a week at the office, or available to attend certain meetings in person, to throw him a bone, even though it's inconvenient.

And, by the way, the boss is totally right that it's tough to work from home with toddlers to take care of. It can be done with structure, but it's tough.

Yeah, it seems like it's not about money at this point in time. Keywords "culture", "structure" and then throwing in the tidbit of "unfair to other employees" (which really just translates to - I don't want to deal with people complaining to me) puts the manager and his director on the line for "company values" - from what my wife tells me, it's extremely rare that anyone would telecommute there. I don't know if she knows all the details though. I think the issue is with the director and her not being able to fully trust her employees and relinquish her grip of control over the group.

Regarding the full time WFH, the manager is threw it out as a hypothetical but upon further discussing it with the director, she seemed to indicate that she "needs someone in the office and full time" but that they could give a laptop for remote access (I suppose for consolation? lol). At this point in time, even if they did offer her that, I'm not sure she'd be in a position to take it given the expectations they already have. I have serious doubts that they'd even offer it though - she told me that they've already opened up a req to fill the position which to me sounds like they don't care much to keep her around. So why should she care so much to stick with them - might as well find a telecommute job with an employer actually open to it than waste any more of her time. The company (or rather director) has shown their real face when it comes down to it.

In fairness to the managers, we don't know if they tried work from home with another employee before and it backfired. We had some extremely dedicated employees do a great job working from home. And then we had others who always had a reason why they were never  responding to emails/calls promptly or why they couldn't join conference calls. Let's be real...very few people can be just as productive during specific work hours when they are also taking care of a young child/baby at the same time. When a manager allows this, they are agreeing to let the employee do 2 jobs at once. This is inherently risky for productivity and employee availability and team morale does have to be considered. We dealt with alot of serious morale issues when others discovered that a specific work from home employee wasn't pulling their weight. I definitely support WFH, but it doesn't mean someone is a bad manager or unfair if they don't think a job is conducive to being shared with full time child care responsibilities.

 Either way, this job sounds like a bad fit for her and your family at this point in time. It's probably best to stay the course and look elsewhere.

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #38 on: January 19, 2016, 10:38:14 AM »
OK, so now we've discovered the real issue is that the manager is not comfortable with giving up control of employees by letting them work from home. He probably does not have experience with this and imagines that employees would be spending all of their time watching Star Trek instead of working. She will have a tough, uphill battle to demonstrate that she can be effective in this environment.

Do not suggest less money, because this is not about money. It's about fear and loss of control.

Recommend you agree to full time WFH. It's good that he is considering an option at all. She may also want to negotiate a day a week at the office, or available to attend certain meetings in person, to throw him a bone, even though it's inconvenient.

And, by the way, the boss is totally right that it's tough to work from home with toddlers to take care of. It can be done with structure, but it's tough.

Yeah, it seems like it's not about money at this point in time. Keywords "culture", "structure" and then throwing in the tidbit of "unfair to other employees" (which really just translates to - I don't want to deal with people complaining to me) puts the manager and his director on the line for "company values" - from what my wife tells me, it's extremely rare that anyone would telecommute there. I don't know if she knows all the details though. I think the issue is with the director and her not being able to fully trust her employees and relinquish her grip of control over the group.

Regarding the full time WFH, the manager is threw it out as a hypothetical but upon further discussing it with the director, she seemed to indicate that she "needs someone in the office and full time" but that they could give a laptop for remote access (I suppose for consolation? lol). At this point in time, even if they did offer her that, I'm not sure she'd be in a position to take it given the expectations they already have. I have serious doubts that they'd even offer it though - she told me that they've already opened up a req to fill the position which to me sounds like they don't care much to keep her around. So why should she care so much to stick with them - might as well find a telecommute job with an employer actually open to it than waste any more of her time. The company (or rather director) has shown their real face when it comes down to it.

In fairness to the managers, we don't know if they tried work from home with another employee before and it backfired. We had some extremely dedicated employees do a great job working from home. And then we had others who always had a reason why they were never  responding to emails/calls promptly or why they couldn't join conference calls. Let's be real...very few people can be just as productive during specific work hours when they are also taking care of a young child/baby at the same time. When a manager allows this, they are agreeing to let the employee do 2 jobs at once. This is inherently risky for productivity and employee availability and team morale does have to be considered. We dealt with alot of serious morale issues when others discovered that a specific work from home employee wasn't pulling their weight. I definitely support WFH, but it doesn't mean someone is a bad manager or unfair if they don't think a job is conducive to being shared with full time child care responsibilities.

 Either way, this job sounds like a bad fit for her and your family at this point in time. It's probably best to stay the course and look elsewhere.

They don't seem to like the term "part-time" there but "contractor" seems more reasonable. I agree with your assessment that it would be like having two full-time jobs, which is why we aren't/weren't pushing for her to be a full-time employee. However, if she were a contractor given limited hours based on what she said she could handle, it seems like it would be more reasonable and more easily justifiable (also with management having to explain it to peers: "due to personal circumstances, we've moved so-and-so into a part-time contractor position and she will be working limited hours from now on" - that sounds much better than saying "so and so will be working from home from now on"). It comes down to her director not trusting her and not wanting to deal with other employees asking about the situation... she has worked for this director (and was hired by her) back in 2010, so perhaps if it were a longer period of time my wife might have eventually gained her trust to allow this type of arrangement. Or perhaps not...

Anyway, yea it doesn't sound like this is the place for her at this point in time. Best to let it go and move on... unless of course they're willing to come back and negotiate (there are, after all, a couple weeks left for them to change their minds)
« Last Edit: January 19, 2016, 10:48:20 AM by jplee3 »

dkaid

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #39 on: January 19, 2016, 12:35:12 PM »
Disappointing.  So many companies are still this way, it's frustrating.  Good luck to your wife. 

MMMWannaBe

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #40 on: January 19, 2016, 03:43:48 PM »
This has been an interesting thread.  I will throw in my $0.2 based on my experience.  I worked for an employer and at the point I notified my boss of my intent to leave the company due to my lengthy commute, I was immediately offered the opportunity to telecommute.  I also worked in Accounting.  I had to sign a 5 page contract specifying the conditions.  One of the conditions was that when I was working I could not have kids in the house with me.  Realistically, I do not think it is possible to work while there are small children in the house.  You do a disservice to both segments of your life: kids and employer.

Also, to avoid the burn to the other employees who did not have the opportunity to work from home, I always termed it "working remotely".  Not sure there is a difference, but linguistically I thought it sounded better.

Hope things work out for your family.  Perhaps it is a blessing in disguise.  When my children were 3 and 5 I did take a couple of years off.  Loved it.  I just recently started a new job now that the youngest is in Kindergarten.  The pay is a shadow of what I made, but it is flexible and I can work from home.  Things tend to work out.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2016, 03:47:13 PM by MMMWannaBe »

jeromedawg

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Re: Giving notice but leaving the door open for part-time/telecommute?
« Reply #41 on: January 19, 2016, 03:58:49 PM »
This has been an interesting thread.  I will throw in my $0.2 based on my experience.  I worked for an employer and at the point I notified my boss of my intent to leave the company due to my lengthy commute, I was immediately offered the opportunity to telecommute.  I also worked in Accounting.  I had to sign a 5 page contract specifying the conditions.  One of the conditions was that when I was working I could not have kids in the house with me.  Realistically, I do not think it is possible to work while there are small children in the house.  You do a disservice to both segments of your life: kids and employer.

Also, to avoid the burn to the other employees who did not have the opportunity to work from home, I always termed it "working remotely".  Not sure there is a difference, but linguistically I thought it sounded better.

Hope things work out for your family.  Perhaps it is a blessing in disguise.  When my children were 3 and 5 I did take a couple of years off.  Loved it.  I just recently started a new job now that the youngest is in Kindergarten.  The pay is a shadow of what I made, but it is flexible and I can work from home.  Things tend to work out.


Thanks for sharing your experience! Yes, maybe it will be good just for my wife to have some time-off to focus on the kid. If she were to do part-time work it would be extremely limited (she was saying maybe 40-60hours a month, max). But I think it's okay if she doesn't find something right off the bat. The idea just came to mind as we were preparing to have her resign. The original action plan is in place with her going SAHM full-time, but I think she's still open to the idea of limited part-time work. I do agree that "working remotely" sounds better than "work from home" especially to others. I think the idea ultimately carries the same connotation so it's really up to management to set the proper expectations across their team.